“Won’t grow,” my great uncle Jim would say every spring to my aunt about her tomatoes. She planted them in the same place year after year. Every year, though, out of the dark, black Kentucky soil in her backyard – basketfull after basketfull of tomatoes grew – mouth-watering, delicious tomatoes. Aunty Joyce grew tomatoes. My grandmother? She grew white azaleas and dog-wood trees – and a backyard full of violets and honeysuckle.
When I went off to college, I carried all that inside me – the taste of springtime honeysuckle and summertime tomatoes – and the story of salvation in the dogwood trees. I stuffed inside the pocket of my soul the recipe of how to make something savory out of simple, unwanted things like violets.
At college, I met a boy – who came from hay and tobacco – and slaughtered pork, and salt-licks in the field and corn cobs grown for cattle feed. Inside him was the muscle of practicality, the challenge of ingenuity and trust and faith in the turning seasons for seed-time and harvest, faith to overcome obstacles and savor early morning moments like winter cattle feeds and tractor workings.
We made room for what each other brought to our marriage – me with my violets, dogwood trees and tomatoes. Him with his practicality, head for technical workings and love of fields and hay – we’ve created our own homestead, rich with the good things our family’s planted in each of us. Love does that – makes room for what each brings and allows each other time to sort through and let go of things that need letting go – and keep things that need keeping.
Heirloom seeds for heirloom gardens!
This so makes me want to write a post about what each of our boys are packing in their seed bag, to take with them on their journey – and what they will keep in the end and what will be discarded – maybe that is a post for next week. There’s a poem for my grandaughter “Harvest Basket, Seed Bag and Water Bucket” that is a blessing and hope for my children, too – if you’ve time – stop by and read it.
We’ve had awful colds, passed probably from one to another through wallowing hugs – ’cause who doesn’t need a hug when their heads all stuffed-up. The hot chocolate’s taken a back seat to some Sweet Orange Spice black tea with a spoonfull of honey. Won’t you grab a cup, let it warm you as it goes down – and include 5 minutes of your heart on the word. . . Garden – and join Lisa-Jo’s gracious hospitality for Five-Minute Friday.